4Roots (Website), a nonprofit entity founded by John Rivers of 4 Rivers Smokehouse as part of the new urban farm coming to the new Packing District, is partnering with a network of local restaurants, hotels, and hospitality organizations under the leadership of the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, to launch a new program that will help needy families throughout the state of Florida.

The Feed the Need Florida program will focus on providing donated meals to families in need during the COVID-19 pandemic. While there are programs that provide meals to students in need, there aren’t many that also provide for the other members of the family.

“Fighting back against the worst pandemic in a century requires innovative solutions, especially to keep families from going hungry,” said Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Nikki Fried. “We’re so grateful to partner with Chef John Rivers, 4Roots, and the 4R Restaurant Group on this extraordinary effort to ensure Floridians can feed their families during this public health crisis. This partnership is a perfect example of working together to overcome enormous obstacles and leverage food service, hospitality, corporate, and government resources to fill critical gaps in food supply. We truly are all in this together, and together, we will feed the need.”

The 4R Restaurant Group will leverage its 4 Rivers BBQ resources to support the meal preparation and distribution across the state in coordination with the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association and the Florida Department of Agriculture. 4Roots has recently activated a 25,000 SF warehouse in Orlando to receive food from the hospitality and restaurant industry to prepare meals in the 4 Rivers 8,000 SF commissary kitchen.

They will also partner with the state to establish food collection, meal prep and distribution points to fill gaps in other counties via the 14 restaurant locations 4 Rivers has throughout the state. As the program expands, Feed the Need Florida will develop a network of restaurant and catering partners to serve the anticipated growing need to address community hunger.

There are two ways individuals and corporations can participate:

  • Donate now at feedtheneedfl.org. 4Roots is accepting monetary donations as well as food donations from restaurants, the hospitality industry and other corporations.
  • Spread the word and encourage others to contribute to support Feed the Need Florida via social media using the hashtag #FeedtheNeedFL.

For more information, visit feedtheneedfl.org.


Brendan O'Connor

Editor in Chief of Bungalower.com

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